- An abundance of food from plant sources, including fruits, vegetables, potatoes, breads and grains, beans, nuts, and seeds.
- Emphasis on variety of minimally processed, seasonally fresh, and locally grown foods. Olive oil as the principal fat, replacing other fats and oils.
- Total fat ranging from less than 25% to no more than 35% of calories, with saturated fat comprising no more than 7% to 8% of calories.
- Daily consumption of low to moderate amounts of cheese and yogurt.
- Twice-weekly consumption of low to moderate amounts of fish and poultry.
- Zero to four eggs per week.
- Fresh fruit as the typical dessert; sweets with a significant amount of sugar (often as honey) and saturated fat consumed no more than a few times per week.
- Red meat consumed a few times per month.